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Internet addiction among Norwegian adults: A stratified probability sample study

Authors


Inger Bakken, SINTEF Health Research – Department of Epidemiology, Abels gate 5 Trondheim 7465, Norway. Tel: +4798245149; fax: +4793070500; e-mail: inger.bakken@sintef.no

Abstract

Most Norwegians are Internet users. We conducted a stratified probability sample study (Norway, 2007, age-group 16–74 years, N= 3,399, response rate 35.3%, 87.1% Internet users) to assess the prevalence of Internet addiction and at-risk Internet use by the Young Diagnostic Questionnaire (YDQ). The prevalence of Internet addiction (YDQ score 5–8) was 1.0% and an additional 5.2% were at-risk Internet users (YDQ score 3–4). Internet addiction and at-risk Internet use was strongly dependent on gender and age with highest prevalences among young males (16–29 years 4.1% and 19.0%, 30–39 years 3.3% and 10.7%). Logistic regression showed that male gender, young age, university level education, and an unsatisfactory financial situation were factors positively associated with “problematic Internet use” (at-risk and addicted use combined). Time spent on the Internet and prevalence of self-reported sleeping disorders, depression, and other psychological impairments increased linearly with YDQ score. Problematic Internet use clearly affects the lives of many people.

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